It is a signal by which U.S. shows that it fights corruption, ex-ambassador

The public designation of the former Democratic leader Vlad Plahotniuc by the U.S. on January 13 is a signal by which the United States shows that it fights corruption and for maintaining the rule of law, Moldova’s former ambassador to the UN Vlad Lupan stated in an interview for RFE/RL’s Moldovan Service that is quoted by IPN.

According to the ex-ambassador, the U.S. Department of State had the right to publicly designate Vladimir Plahotniuc due to his involvement in significant corruption. This is not a unique decision. One-two designation decisions concerning persons from different countries are taken each month. “Last December, there were designated three persons from Latin America and Eastern Europe, including from countries that recently became part of the EU. Last September, the designation referred to Liviu Dragnea”.

Vlad Lupan noted this is a resonant act for Moldova and the U.S. transmitted the message that the ball is now in the Moldovan legal system’s court. “The expectations of the foreign partners were communicated more than once to the authorities of the Republic of Moldova. This is a subject that has been discussed for years. Nothing changed in this regard as the justice sector didn’t change to the extent to which we could say that we have rule of law. So, this message was and remains valid.”

The former ambassador said Vladimir Plahotniuc had been a partner of Igor Dodon since 2016. They negotiated directly. “Plahotniuc wasn’t suitable for Mister Dodon as this had criminal cases against him, etc. So, Igor Dodon made effort to have Mister Plahotniuc eliminated from the system so that he could rule without competition and fear. And this actually happened. This was the goal of the Party of Socialists,” noted Vlad Lupan.

On January 13, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo announced by a statement that former Moldovan official Vladimir Plahotniuc was designated publicly due to involvement in significant corruption and is ineligible for visas to the United States. His wife Oxana Childescu, his son Timofei Plahotniuc and his minor child were also designated.

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